OrderPaperToday – The House of Representatives on Wednesday passed a motion to review the country’s foreign policy towards liberating the black man from racial oppression and discrimination across the world.
This followed a motion of urgent national public importance sponsored by Mr. Garba Datti Muhammad (APC, Kaduna).
He recalled that Nigeria attained independence in October 1960 after British colonial rule that spanned over a century and only after a bitter struggle lasting decades.
The lawmaker acknowleded the contributions of nationalists and founding fathers of Nigeria like Dr. Nnamdi Azikiwe, Sir (Alh.) Ahmadu Bello and Chief Obafemi Awolowo, amongst others as well as unsung heroes such as the Aba Women’s “Warriors” of 1929.
He also noted that the dehumanisation of Nigerians leaves an indelible yearning to confront denial, discrimination and oppression of any form, adding that upon independence, Africa became the centerpiece of Nigeria’s foreign policy since one in every four black man on the surface of our earth is a Nigerian.
He also disclosed that “the apartheid policy in South Africa was the most compelling instance of racism of its time and in spite of her “infancy” as a sovereign State, Prime Minister, Alh. (Sir) Abubakar Tafawa Balewa directed that a letter Ref. PPS. 27 dated 4th April, 1961 be written to the African National Congress ANC) assuring it ‘that on his part, the battle against apartheid had just begun’ and so began the dismantling of apartheid after more than one hundred (100) years of its reign in South Africa.”
He further explained that, “true to his word, Nigeria lobbied for the expulsion of South Africa from the Commonwealth of Nations in 1961. Nostalgic that back those days on account of our corporate and collective integrity that culminated in cross-border dignity, Nigeria did not slumber; Nigeria did not speak from both sides of her mouth; Nigeria roared and never whimpered in the community of sovereign states where the inalienable rights of her racial kind were in issue.
“Bearing in mind that Nigeria rushed to sign every human rights treaty of the time like the International Covenant on Civil and Political Rights of 1966 that espoused equality and prohibited discrimination on account of race,” Mr. Datti decried the incessant dehumanisation of black people across the world which has compelled helpless black communities to start looking inwards towards resolving their challenges and that this has led to the groundbreaking movement “Black Lives Matter” in the United States and that with the recent police killing of the black man, Mr. George Floyd in Minneapolis, Minnesota and the resultant protests, the “Black Lives Matter” protests were slowly spreading, even if hindered by the COVID-19 pandemic, across continents.
He also pointed that if the trend of discrimination; annihilation, genocide and “racial cleansing” being perpetrated against Nigerians; Africans and black people all over the world is not halted, ‘there will cease to be a black population on earth in due course of time.”
While passing the motion, the House unanimously resolved to mandate the Committees on ‘Foreign Affairs and Diaspora to collaborate to organise a conference of local and international stakeholders towards fashioning comprehensive approaches to the festering challenge of discrimination, annihilation, genocide and “racial cleansing being perpetrated against Nigerians, Africans and black people all over the world”.